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Smitha Prasadh

I'm a user experience designer, trying to do right by the world.

Presentation: Intercultural UX

What this is about

I got a chance to present on a topic of great interest to me: merging principles of intercultural communication with UX design.

During grad school, I'd done some work with sociolinguistics and discourse analysis in the context of intercultural communication. I immediately recognized how these disciplines could help broaden designers' skills of empathy when designing for other cultural groups.

For this presentation, I started by defining culture, principles of intercultural thinking, and some implications of designing/working interculturally.

From there, I mapped several intercultural thinkers' work to tangible examples of designing for different cultures. For example, power distance between “superiors" (a company/government) and “subordinates" (citizens/consumers) can impact the information architecture of a site, in terms of how much information is made readily available to end users and how freely they're able to navigate.

I closed with basic reminders to avoid making assumptions/"othering" others and to focus on similarities as well.

Presented at:

  • IxD – 2016 March 2 – Helsinki, Finland – 10 minute “lightning” talk
  • World IA Day – 2016 February 20 – Pittsburgh, PA – 30-minutes (IA-focused)
  • UXDC Conference – 2015 October 9 – Washington DC – 30 minutes
  • Web Design Day – 2015 June 12 – Pittsburgh, PA – 10 minute “lightning” talk
  • UXPA Boston – 2013 May 29 – Boston, MA – 30 minutes